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Motor Vehicle Accident

Sydney Injury Lawyers have many years of experience in running claims for those who have suffered personal injury in motor vehicle accidents.  Our team of dedicated solicitors specialise in bringing car accident claims to achieve the best possible compensation for your circumstances.  Read on for a list of common queries that we are usually asked by a person in your situation.

 

Do I have entitlement to bring a claim for a Motor Vehicle Accident?

You are entitled to compensation for a motor vehicle accident if someone else’s negligence caused you to get injured.  If the accident was solely your fault, generally you will not be eligible for compensation.

Accordingly, if you were a driver or passenger of a car, truck, bus, bicycle, scooter or any other type of motor vehicle and you believe that the accident was not your fault or not entirely your fault, then our experienced injury lawyers may run a claim seeking compensation for your injuries and its impact on your life.

You can also take legal action if you were a pedestrian involved in the traffic accident.

If the motor vehicle that hit you has driven away before you can record the number plate, or if it is unregistered, then you can still make a car accident claim for your injuries.

If a child is solely to blame for an accident, they may still be able to make a claim due to special rules that apply to children.

If you have suffered from spinal cord or brain injuries, multiple amputations, severe burns or permanent blindness, you are also entitled to run a claim regardless of blame.

Think you might be entitled to compensation? Speak to one of our solicitors today on 1300 123 124 to confirm whether you can run a claim for compensation.

How do I begin my claim?

Our experienced injury lawyers will lodge the necessary documents with the CTP insurer and throughout the CTP claim process, and possibly a law suit, we work on proving that:

  • The person who caused your injuries owed you a duty of care;
  • This person has breached their duty of care (eg by speeding or not keeping a proper look-out); and
  • You have suffered injuries because of the traffic accident.

Is there a time limit to bring a compensation claim?

The general rule is that you have three (3) years from the date of the accident to bring your claim, however in certain circumstances this timeframe may be sooner.  Our lawyers advise our clients to lodge an accident claim within 12 months to prevent a late lodgment affecting your claim.

Pursuant to NSW law, it is a requirement that you report the accident to the police as well as lodge an Accident Notification Form within 28 days of the accident.  It is also essential that you lodge a Personal Injury Claim Form within 6 months of the accident.

It is important to consult one of our injury lawyers as soon as possible to ensure your rights to claim compensation are protected.

What happens if I was travelling to or from work at the time of the accident?

You may be partly to blame for an accident if for example, you were a passenger and did not use a seatbelt or if you accepted a ride from a driver you knew was intoxicated.  If you are in this situation, you still may be entitled to compensation however the amount you get will be reduced by the percentage by which you contributed to the loss.

What are some of the scenarios where the other driver could be found at fault for the accident?

Car crashes are common and motorbike accidents and truck accidents are on the rise. Accidents on the road, road-related areas, footpaths and driveways can occur when there are instances of:

  • Speeding;
  • Running a red light;
  • Sudden lane changes without proper checks;
  • Illegal u-turns;
  • Unsecured loads;
  • Driving whilst under the influence of drugs or alcohol;
  • Texting or calling on a mobile phone;
  • Falling asleep at the wheel;
  • Not keeping a proper lookout.

What kind of injuries can I claim for?

Your injuries may include; whiplash, soft tissue damage, scarring, fractures, broken bones, dislocations and injuries to the spine, spinal cord, head, brain and other internal organs.  Injuries to the face, shoulders, wrists, hips and knees are also common.

Post-traumatic stress and psychological disorders that arise, or are made worse, because of the accident can also form part of the claim.

If you are a dependent such as a child, or spouse of someone who has died because of a motor accident, you may be able to claim for the loss of this financial support as well as funeral expenses.

Recent changes have been made to the kind of entitlements that may be available to employees.  For example, where there has been a heart attack or stroke claim, this can only be made if the employment gave rise to a significantly higher risk of the worker suffering that injury.  Also, disease claims are now only able to be made if the main contributing factor of the disease was the employment.  Additionally, nervous shock claims are only able to be made where the work injury is the nervous shock, therefore this type of claim can no longer be made by the relatives of an injured or deceased worker.

No traffic accident claim is too difficult for our experienced solicitors who will work hard to protect your rights to compensation.  Call us today on 1300 123 124.

What happens if I was travelling to or from work at the time of the accident?

If you were on your way to work or coming home from work when the accident occurred, you may also be eligible for a workers’ compensation journey claim in addition to a CTP claim pursuant to Section 10 of the Workers Compensation Act (1987).  However, we will need to assess whether there was a real and substantial connection between your employment and the journey where the injury arose.  If the injury occurred during a deviation from the journey, the injury would be deemed to be unconnected with your employment.

Who is the claim against and where does the money come from?

In all jurisdictions around Australia, it is a requirement that when a motor vehicle is registered, it is covered by Compulsory Third Party (CTP) insurance.

Accordingly, when Sydney Injury Lawyers run a claim for your injuries, we are seeking to be compensated from the CTP insurer and the money will not come out of the driver’s pocket directly.

If you would like further information on this, our lawyers are willing to go over this in detail with you.  Call 1800 123 124 today.

What if the vehicle that caused the accident was uninsured?

Whilst it is an offence to use an uninsured motor vehicle, often this issue is prevalent in practice.  You can relax with the knowledge that our experts will fight to ensure you do not miss out on the compensation you are entitled to.  Where the accident is caused by a motor vehicle which is not registered and there is no CTP insurer then we will make a claim against the Nominal Defendant (the State).  To do this we will need to establish:

  1. The driver of the unregistered vehicle was at fault;
  2. The accident occurred on a road;
  3. The injured party was not a trespasser; and
  4. The vehicle causing the injury was a ‘motor vehicle’.

What if I don’t have the details of the other vehicle/s that was involved in the accident?

You still have rights to begin a claim against the Nominal Defendant.  Additionally, once our investigations have commenced we will hopefully ascertain the correct entity against which you may be entitled to bring a claim.

What will I be compensated for?

Our aim at Sydney Injury Lawyers is to obtain full compensation for you to cover:

  • Medical expenses (treatment, doctor’s visits, hospital, surgery, specialist appointments);
  • Rehab costs (physio, chiro, massage, acupuncture);
  • Loss of earnings (past and future);
  • Pain and suffering (if you have been severely injured);
  • Loss of enjoyment of life;
  • Modifications to your home or vehicle that you need due to the accident.

I have not been able to afford any rehabilitation such as physiotherapy? Can you help?

We cannot organise or pay for rehabilitation.  However, once we lodge a claim against the CTP insurer on your behalf, and you comply with various aspects in the initial phase of the claim, then we can request that the insurer fund your rehabilitation.  The rest of the rehabilitation funding process is then left with the insurer to approve or reject the request.  Any rehabilitation paid for by the CTP insurer will be taken into account when discussing possible settlement options at a later time.

How much is my claim worth?

It is best to speak to one of our experienced vehicle accident solicitors to get a clear picture of how much your claim could be worth as the amount of money will depend on your individual circumstances.

The following factors will vary the amount of money you will receive:

  • Your age;
  • The extent of your injuries;
  • What you do in your line of work;
  • Whether you own a business;
  • Whether you have lost wages or will continue to lose wages to some extent going into the future;
  • How much you have spent on treatment and other medical expenses and if this is required going into the future;
  • The level of care you now need.

Our dedicated injury lawyers will arrange a medical appointment with a doctor who is specialised in assessing the particular injuries you have. The doctor will then provide your solicitor with a medico-legal report to support your motor accident claim.

How long will my claim take?

This varies on the complexity of the traffic accident and the extent of your injuries.

How much treatment you require for each injury is a major factor in the length of your claim.

The solicitors at Sydney Injury Lawyers can finalise basic traffic accident claims in 12-18 months. However, if you have suffered more than one (1) injury and/or there are liability issues then your claim may take longer. Speaking with an experienced injury lawyer from our office will help you understand the possible timeframes for your compensation claim.

What sort of legal fees will I get charged?

Sydney Injury Lawyers operate on a ‘No Win No Fee’ basis. If you have a successful claim where you are paid a sum of money, then legal fees are simply taken out at the end when your matter settles.

The amount of legal fees varies for each individual claim depending on the complexity and nature of the matter.

Will my matter go to Trial?

Not necessarily.  In NSW most cases are settled through the Claims Assessment and Resolution Service (“CARS”) which is an informal adjudication process.   During this process, depending on your injuries you may be assessed by a medical assessor.  A claims assessor will then evaluate the evidence and decide whether the insurer should pay you and how much it should pay.  If you do not agree with the claims assessor’s decision, then going to court is an option.  However you need to be wary that by going to court you could actually be awarded less than what the assessor originally awarded you.

How will my compensation be paid?

In most circumstances you will receive a lump sum payment.